Alexa

West pummels East 12-9 in NHL All-Star game

West pummels East 12-9 in NHL All-Star game

Colorado's Joe Sakic overshadowed young stars Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin with four assists to lead the Western Conference over the Eastern Conference 12-9 in the NHL All-Star game on Wednesday.
Crosby and Ovechkin will get their chance to dominate an All-Star game, but this one belonged to Sakic, the night's most-tenured All-Star making his 12th appearance.
Phoenix's well-traveled Yanic Perreault, Columbus' Rick Nash, Minnesota's Brian Rolston and Chicago's Martin Havlat each had two goals for the West squad.
Daniel Briere, one of three starters from Eastern Conference-leading Buffalo, had a goal and four assists and was selected the MVP.
The league's first midseason showcase since 2004 was a high-scoring affair befitting post-lockout rules and new streamlined uniforms designed, in part, to make the players faster.
Crosby and Ovechkin started on the same line and played most of the game together for the East, but just never could get into the flow. Ovechkin's goal in the second period was the only point between the duo that's being compared to Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux.
The 19-year-old Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, who was the top vote-getter for the All-Star game, leads the NHL in scoring with 72 points. Ovechkin, the 21-year-old from Moscow who was rookie of the year last season has 65 points for Washington, his 29 goals just one shy of the league lead.
Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara scored two goals for the East squad.
Neither Crosby nor Ovechkin were in the NHL when the last All-Star game was played, before the lockout and then the Olympics last year put the game on the shelf. They were among 20 first-time All-Stars.
Sakic, who has spent his entire 18-season career with the Colorado/Quebec franchise, was the MVP of the last All-Star game when he scored three goals.
This time, Sakic was playing set-up man. He assisted on consecutive goals less than a minute apart midway through the second period that put the West ahead to stay at 7-5. Those were among four goals in a 4?minute stretch against New Jersey goalie Martin Brodeur, who allowed six goals in 16 shots he faced during the second period.
Sakic's four assists pushed his All-Star total to 16, surpassing Mark Messier's record 14 in 15 games. Sakic moved into third on the list of All-Star points with 22, trailing only Gretzky (25) and Lemieux (23).
Besides all the fresh faces, the players looked different wearing new uniform systems that the NHL and Reebok tested and designed for more than two years. It's the biggest change to NHL uniforms since the 1960s, when synthetic fabrics replaced the old wool jerseys. The difference in the new uniforms was obvious. Instead of bulky tops, the players looked like they were hardly wearing pads.